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 2024 Award applications CLOSED

COMA’s Emerging Jazz Writer’s Award celebrates an emerging leader in the field of contemporary jazz composition and performance. 

COMA has developed this award to create an avenue of recognition for an exceptional young composer-performer, and to deliver a relevant and timely program of activities to the recipient.


With the support of Arts SA, COMA is proud to offer the following to the award recipient:

  • Two days of recording with our wonderful friends at Wizard Tone Studios

  • Mentorship opportunities via conversations with leading Australian jazz artists

  • A paid performance opportunity at COMA’s regular series at the Wheatsheaf Hotel in 2024

  • A one year COMA membership providing discount entry to all COMA performances

  • A paid commission to be featured at COMA’s 2024 end of year concert


Your involvement:

To be eligible for this award, you will be:

A female, non-binary, or gender diverse jazz writer/performer aged 35 or under as of 31 March 2024

Composing and performing your own original music that you consider to fit within the jazz canon

Based in South Australia, but available to be in Adelaide on the following dates: 30 April 2024 (for award presentation) and 16 December 2024 (for the end of year concert) 

Available to perform as part of COMA’s 2024 series at the Wheatsheaf Hotel (date to be negotiated)


To apply:

Please email the following information to COMA at

  • Your name, date of birth, email, contact phone number and pronouns

  • Your artistic biography, including recent achievements

  • A short statement (maximum 2 paragraphs) outlining what impact you feel the award would have for your development as an Australian jazz artist. 

  • A brief statement regarding your recording project: what do you intend to do, and how will it benefit your professional practice?

  • A link to 2 examples of recorded work, composed by you. The recordings do not need to be professional – they can be live, video, audio or smartphone recordings. Please contact us if you have any questions regarding your recordings. Please limit the length of the recordings to a maximum of 10 minutes.


Applications reopen early 2025
Contact the COMA committee at with any questions about the award or application process.


The assessment process:

Following the close of applications, the COMA committee will assess the applications and select the award recipient. All applicants will then be notified via email. 




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 2023 Award Recipient

Congratulations to Enne Rignanese

Enne Rignanese is an internationally performing composer, arranger and bassist. Enne has played with musicians including James Morrison, Mat Jodrell, Wycliffe Gordon and Jeff Clayton. In 2016, after their first year of university, they were given the Most Improved award. They performed two national tours with the James Morrison Academy Big Band in 2017 and 2018.


Enne graduated from the James Morrison Academy of Music with a Bachelor of Music (Jazz) in 2018 and a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in 2019 after a national tour performing at venues such as The Melbourne Recital Centre and The Governer, Hindmarsh.  They were also one of two musicians in their year selected for an exchange program with the Juilliard School of Music in New York and the University of California, Los Angeles where they performed with the Herbie Hancock Institute of Jazz Fellows at The Blue Whale.


Since moving back to Adelaide in 2020, they’ve performed in various shows at the Adelaide Fringe (2021-2023) and have released their debut album, Pitter Patter. They were a recipient of the Creative Original Music Adelaide 'Sound Alliance Mentorship Program' (2022-2023) and have begun their work with Lazaro Numa on the exploration of Cuban Music and other Latin genres. They also performed with The New Standards at the Adelaide Festival Centre in 2023.


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 2022 Award Recipient

Congratulations to Jasmine Ferguson

Jasmine Ferguson was born into a very musical family in Adelaide and has played music all her life, with trombone and voice being her primary instruments.


Jasmine has supported many notable artists touring to Adelaide with backing vocals/trombone, and she was recently selected as a member of the trombone section for The Australian National Jazz Orchestra Youth Big Band.


Jasmine is a recent graduate of the Elder Conservatorium of Music. During her studies she received numerous academic awards/scholarships to which she can now add the Emerging Jazz Writer’s Award 2022. 


As the 2022 EJWA recipient, Jasmine looks forward to spending two days at Wizard Tone Studios to record an EP of her original big band compositions, in addition to mentorship conversations with leading Australian jazz artists, culminating in a performance at COMA.



 2020 Award Recipient

Congratulations to Christina Guala

Christina Guala is an Adelaide-based saxophonist, vocalist and composer who works regularly playing in a number of Adelaide's ensembles and is an instrumental tutor.

She has composed for a variety of local projects, ost notably for her debut album with her saxophone quartet "It's Been a While".

Christina is excited to continue developing her compositional skills with a new ensemble as the recipient of the 2020 Emerging Jazz Writer Award.


With the support os APRA AMCOS, COMA is proud to offer the following to Christina Guala as the 2020 recipient

  • A day of recording with our wonderful friends at Wizard Tone Studios

  • Mentorship opportunities in conversations with leading Australian female jazz artists -
    Linda Oh, Shannon Barnett, Anna Butterss, Chloe Kim

  • A paid performance opportunity at COMA's regular series at the Wheatsheaf Hotel in 2021


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